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Eliot Spitzer and A Culture of Corruption

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Message Greg Mucha

I have been studying the machinations of American politics with some interest since my first university history professor alerted a class of numbed-out, suburbanoid spawn to the realities of El Salvador and mass murder on behalf of American capitalism.  While I was more than a little disappointed by the utter lack of social conscience on the part of my peers, I was not surprised that Ronald Wilson Reagan's administration was behind a series of crimes a friend of mine and former Beltway insider during the Kennedy Administration, regarded as, "bigger than Watergate."

I stayed angry for a good eleven years after my initiation into adulthood at the feet of, "well, there you go again. "  For reasons ranging from the insider information I had with respect to Iran Contra, to the deeply personal insults and offenses perpetrated against my family by modern psychiatry,  or lack thereof, I became as toast.

Anger and resentment are like eating poison and expecting someone else to die.

When the truth of any matter shows up, it does not appear piecemeal.  While it is often perceived piecemeal, this is not due to its inherent wholeness but due to the limited processing capacity of the human nervous system.  The gap between the truth and how we humans have managed to build a civilization spun from whole cloth is sometimes too traumatic to be absorbed all at once.  I have had twenty years to condition myself to the sometimes abyssmally low expectations I have learned to apply to human behavior in general, let alone political behavior in particular, so I can not expect you, gentle reader, to take what I have to say with anything but incredulity.

And yet this reality I have to share with you must come forth whether you believe it, or not.  One day you will, as I have, come to accept it, but I do not expect you to believe a word of it at first for I did not.  I could not.  It is too traumatic a realization.

But as I awaken today, as every day, with the tainted news of my once reverred National Public Radio blasting me out of my slumber, I am moved to pen another protest, shine light into shadow and tilt, once again, at the windmill of a media more accustomed to agenda setting than to following the tear in the social fabric to its frayed and fraying edge.

This morning it is all about Eliot and how he let us down.  The once great Eliot Spitzer has taken one for the team not twelve hours after appearing to support a woman's right to choose how her body will be used in a society dominated by a failing masculine agenda of poverty and profiteering.  Once the political behavior of a public figure crosses the line and takes a side in a debate, those whose sacred cows are then scheduled for slaughter come forward with ammunition designed to intimidate and coerce, to punish and prevent, to scold and avenge, even though their upcoming reckoning with the sword of truth changes not but in time.

However, this is what I have learned in twenty years of watching history unfold from time into the here and the now.

A presently strong, if failing contingent within the United States government -- and, by inference, world government -- requires that you show your neck to the headsman even before you present your curriculum vitae.  Meaning that before any man or woman can be accepted into the inner circles of American power and authority, you must be caught red-handed in an embarrassing compromise that could serve as your undoing, the end of your life as you have come to know it, your de facto assassination.   Perhaps this is better than blowing a President's brains out of his skull in front of his wife, but I do have a third alternative: how about respecting the will of the people?  How naive of me to suggest that democracy actually works better than all other alternative forms of governance!

The blessed comedienne Kathleen Madigan suggested that in these days where Republicans submit bills entitled to represent the exact opposite of their intended effects, we as Democrats and Independents should learn to entitle all of our bills and initiatives as, "Be Kind to Retarded People," no matter what their purpose.  In this way when the cameras and microphones of an agenda setting media gone mad swing to us, we can simply bow our heads in a quick mock prayer and then posit, "I didn't want to bring this up, but my opponent voted against...."

Funny?  Absurd?  How absurd is it that we have allowed ourselves to forget that couples close in age and level of experience must one day come to accept that andropause and menopause trigger opposite sexual behaviors in the human species?  Not to excuse the private, personal shortcomings of any particular male or female, but what, precisely, do we expect a man whose wife can no longer perform sexually to do?  Do we expect the couple to engage in the eviscerating experience of wrailing against the inevitable like a barren couple who repeatedly appears at the fertility clinic only to die a little each time with each disappointment?  Or, do we expect a man and a woman to simply terminate a long and fruitful partnership simply because he has a biological need that he can no longer ignore?  Do we expect him to wait until the end of his sexual prowess, and therefore his youthful vitality, before he appears in the public eye?

What, precisely, is wrong with a man hiring a professional, discreet female to relieve him of the bondage of the body in which he finds himself?  Would we rather Eliot Spitzer rip his family apart because of a temporary condition that will last, at most, ten or fifteen years?  What sort of monsters are we, we Americans?

And, conversely, what is wrong with a woman in the reverse situation seeking an analogous resolution?  Are we so foolish and so driven that we actually believe that the planets always align on those who choose marriage and partnership over independence and non-accountability to one person?  Could we please give ourselves a break, for christ's sake?  Can we stop making rules that no one has ever, or will ever, be able to live up to? 

This sense of outrage directed at Spitzer almost presumes that his wife is somehow a victim in all of this.  We do not know this to be a fact at this time.  And, truly, it is none of our damn business.  What matters is that the laws of the State of New York have been faithfully and lawfully executed without prejudice or entrapment during Spitzer's tenure.   

And can we also, please, consider the distinct possibility that the public, political behaviors we are observing at this point in our history are the direct result of a culture of institutionalized blackmail so pervasive and so hideous that our only viable option, our only missing act as a people, is to forgive one another for the fact that it is, "not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings?"

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Award winning poet, writer and refugee from the educational testing industry. Richard agitates, supports and motivates activists of all kinds, the most well-known being Cindy Sheehan. Web developer and designer by day, writer by night, Richard has (more...)
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